GOOGLE IT: Start by browsing for recipes online with your particular search terms. I usually use our dietary restrictions “gluten free vegan” for the first part of the search box, then I add the additional search terms after that. If you’re looking for casseroles, cookies, muffins, dinner ideas, lunchbox ideas, just add those search terms to the end of the dietary restrictions, so it reads “gluten free vegan casseroles” or “gluten free vegan kid friendly” or any search terms that you are specifically looking for.
FOLLOW BLOGS: Multiple sites will appear, so start filtering through them. Check out the recipes and see if they are something that your family will like. If so, check out the site’s Recipe Index to see if there are additional recipes that fit your family’s needs. If the recipe you found is a one-hit wonder, print it and look for more. If you find that you’re interested in many of the site’s recipes, subscribe to that person’s blog, and you’ll receive each new recipe in your Inbox every few days. I usually look through the recipe, see if it meets all of our dietary restrictions, confirm that my family will like it, then print it out to add to my binder. The more blogs you find that meet your requirements, the more daily messages you’ll receive. I delete the recipes that don’t fit our family on a daily basis, then I go through my Inbox once a week to print out the new recipes that I like and want to try later. My tried-and-true, hands-down, favorite bloggers are (in alphabetical order):
CREATE A BINDER: Now that you have all of these great new recipes to try, start a binder. Make dividers to separate the sections of your binder. Here are a few ideas: breakfast, dinner, potlucks, appetizers, side dishes, snacks, desserts, dressings, sauces, smoothies, beverages. I started out with a wimpy little binder and a ton of allergy-free cookbooks. Now, I have ditched all of the cookbooks and use a total of three binders that are custom for our family only (because no single cookbook can really accommodate everyone’s dietary restrictions AND each family’s food preferences at the same time).
These are my best tips for getting started, and soon you will want to create, post, and share all of your new recipes that you worked so hard to find, so that other people can benefit from them, too!